Running Head: LIFE SKILLS RESEARCH-BASED INSTRCTIONAL PROGRAM Research-Based Instructional Program One major disadvantage to developing and implementing instructional programs not based on research is the time spent. “Time is money”, and wasted time means wasted money. Money is wasted on implementing programs that are not research based. Time and money is wasted on training. Overall time and money are wasted on the program. Without the proper research it may not be known if the program is needed in the first place. Programs may be developed that are not needed, or that may not give the desired results.
Research is the prerequisite for change or reform in education. DuFour & Eaker (2008) discuss reasons why the United States is behind other countries and the curriculum reforms that have come as a result. Without research no one would be able to give reasons as to why the United States cannot compete globally in education. Without research the scholar, practitioner, research model would not exist. Program Overview Botvin Life Skills Training (LST) name after its developer, Dr. Gilbert J. Botvin was developed in the late 1970s. The program is based on scientific evidence, and is backed by over 20 scientific studies.
It is a drug and alcohol abuse prevention program designed to be implemented in a classroom setting. It was developed to be taught in grades as early as 3rd grade and as late as 10th grade. The elementary grades program consists of 24, 30-45 minute class sessions that should be taught over a 3 year period. The middle grades program consists of 30, 45 minute sessions that are taught over a 3 year period. The high school program consists of 10, 40-45 minute classes that can be taught in conjunction with the middle grades program.
Adoption of research-based program In the state of California more than $2 billion is spent each year on prevention efforts. California’s gang czar, Paul Seave was quoted in saying that ,“there are so many evidence based practices, but few have scientific support” (Reynolds, 2010). Peter Greenwood, leader of the Association for the Advancement of Evidence Based Practice is also quoted in saying that,”the American public does not have a strong science background and people don’t always have the skills to know when someone’s pulling their leg”.
The middle grades Life skills program was implemented in an effort to cut back and potentially stop gang violence and the use of drugs and alcohol among school age children. The program has proven to be far more successful than program such as DARE (Drug Abuse and Resistance Education) and other “tough love” strategies. These programs do not seem to motivate students to stay out of jail, and steer clear of drugs and alcohol. People believe in these programs, and find it hard to believe that they do not produce the desired results. Outcomes and Implications
Students that use drugs and alcohol are prone to dangerous consequences. Some of these consequences include increase in behavior that increases risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, increase risk of jail time, and potentially hurting others around them. The purpose of implementing a program such as Life Skills is to make students aware of these consequences and give them tools to stop their life from going in a downward spiral. Staff Development As an instructional leader one must show their staff that they believe in the things that are being taught to students.
First, a good leader has to research in order to have a knowledge base for the tasks that teachers will be asked to take part in. Second, the leader must have training on the materials and the results that should be expected. They should be shown the way that things need to go in order for a program to be successful. Finally, an effective leader has to be motivated and be able to motivate their subordinates to take on a task that will benefit the student population. Once the leader is prepared themselves, they can then train their subordinates, or get the proper resources for the training to take place and be effective.
References Botvin Life Skills Training, Retrieved from http://www. lifeskillstraining. com DuFour, R. , & Eaker, R. (2008). Professional Learning Communities at Work. New Insights for Improving Schools. Reston, VA: Solution Tree. Patterson, D. , & Keefe, R. (2008). Using Social Construction Theory as a Foundation for Macro-Level Interventions in Communities Impacted by HIV and Addictions. Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, 35(2), 111-126. Retrieved from Research Starters – Sociology database. Reynolds, Julie. (2010). Keeping kids out of trouble not easy [Electronic version]. The Herald.